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Much mobile phone use causes brain cancer?

05-17-2010 10:49 BJT

BEIJING, May 17 (Xinhuanet) -- Those who use mobile phones much have a higher risk of getting brain cancer, but things can not be said for sure, according to a 10-year study conducted by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) under World Health Organisation, media reports Sunday.

The study, which involves 13,000 people and costs 24.4 million U.S. dollars, found heavy cellphone use didn't increase the risk of two types of brain tumours, namely, meningioma or glioma.

"The study doesn't reveal an increased risk, but we can't conclude that there is no risk because there are enough findings that suggest a possible risk," chief author of the study Elisabeth Cardis was quoted as saying by AFP.

IARC's director Christopher Wild said "the results really don't allow us to conclude that there is any risk associated with mobile phone use, but... it is also premature to say that there is no risk associated with it."

Wild further explained the study's methodology may not be proper, for example, people were asked to remember how many hours they used their cell phones, instead of being monitored.

Data from the study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, indicated that those who had never used a cell phone had a higher risk of brain cancer than cell phone users, but the scientists said that information suggested problems with the methods.

The data also suggested that cumulative call time might raise the risk of brain cancer, but the researchers said that the conclusion was unreliable.

Chairperson of the study Elisabeth Dardin said, "We can't just conclude that there is no effect.... There are indications of a possible increase. We're not sure that it is correct. It could be due to a possible bias, but the indications are sufficiently strong... to be concerned."

The study was also controversial because 25 percent of its funding came from mobile phone companies.

Editor:Zheng Limin |Source: Xinhua

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